This marked the start of our road trip to neighboring state, Oregon. We began the morning by having breakfast at a little cafe en route to Tacoma, were would switch off with our friends cousin whose car we were borrowing for the trip to Portland. The Shipwreck Cafe is this small stop off of Martin Way in Olympia, Washington. I got the breakfast special, which consisted of chickenfried steak, eggs, hashbrowns and toast. It was better than I expected! Tons of gravy lathered over the chicken steak. Don’t pay attention to the calories because the gravy really makes this dish special.
After breakfast we headed straight for our first stop in Portland, the Full Sail Brewery, which is right next to Hood River. Full Sail Brewery is known for their award winning Session brew. The brewery tour lasted about 30 minutes and was quite interesting and informative. They walk you through the entire beer making process and even let you taste the ingrediants that go into brewing beer. At the end of the tour you score a free Full Sail glass!
The food at Full Sail Brewery was OK but the beer was exceptional. I especially loved the Full Sail Session Lager, that is definitely my type of beer and well worth the 2.5 hour drive from Tacoma. We ended up buying a case to bring back to the hotel.
After Full Sail we headed to Portland to check into our hotel, the third Marriot stop of our Seattle/Portland journey. We got lost. But that was a good thing because we ended up at a Traders Joe’s and bought tons of snacks! I wish Hawaii had a Trader Joe’s.
Lo and behold our hotel was only 5 minutes away from Trader Joes. We made it to our hotel, quickly unpacked and headed out to yet another beer destination – Rogue Distillery & Public House, to meet up with Travis Greenwood of Found Item Clothing and Patrick Treadway of Tilteed! We had a great time chatting about tees, Portland life, tees, and tees! It was great meeting up with those two excellent dudes. And my friends were happy because they scored some free tees from Patrick and one of you lucky readers will score a free tee(s) from Travis (I need to first figure out how to give them away)!
Hey, it’s Patrick from Tilteed.com! He markets, prints, and ships out all Tilteed orders by himself! Talk about dedication and being passionate about what you do! Follow Tilteed on Twitter @Tilteed. Use the code â€œTiltCotyâ€ for an additional $2 off your Tilteed order!
After Rogue, Patrick was kind enough to drive us to VooDoo Doughnuts to get a taste of the weirdness that is Portland! VooDoo Doughnoughts was great experiece filled with an eclectic set of people! I’ve never quite experienced anything like VooDoo Doughnuts. It was a trip to say the least. And Patrick was right, VooDoo Doughnuts is best experienced at night because when we stopped by the following morning, the crowd was a bore compared to the night munchers.
Yes, that’s bacon on top of maple syrup drenched doughnut. Only at VooDoo Doughnuts!
Portland here we come! The morning was spent exploring the Pearl District of Portland. Our first stop was the famous Powell’s Books on Burnside. To say that this bookstore is huge is a big understatement. It’s ginormous. It’s probably larger than most public libraries you’ve been to. The store is split up into 8 different sections based on genre and occupies three full floors. You could spend countless hours exploring Powell’s, unfortunately our time was limited so our visit was brief (I still left with two new books).
As I was walking through Portland someone walked right pass me and said “I Love Your Shirt”. You can get it from I Am Wellness. Use the code “SUMMER09″ for 15% off (hopefully the code still works).
By the time we were through with Powell’s we headed out to lunch at Old Town Pizza which is an iconic Portland eatery with a haunted reputation. “Donâ€™t be surprised if an unexpected guest joins you for a slice today. A constant presence at Old Town Pizza is Nina (pronounced â€œNigh-naâ€), our resident ghost. If you feel a presence behind you, or smell a faint waft of perfume, you may have just received a visit. Nina is often seen in a black dress observing diners and wandering the basement below.” We settled on the House Pizza topped with salami, pepperoni, Italian sausage, mushroom, black olives and bell peppers. The pizza was good but unfortunately there was no sighting of Nina, the resident ghost. I will say, though, that the restroom was freaky as hell. It is very dimly lit in there and I had a weird feeling (while I was peeing no less) that someone was watching me. Freaky!
Ground Kontrol is a neat little vintage arcade that Travis of Found Item Clothing suggested we hit up and I’m glad that we did! We spent about an hour in there playing some very old school arcade games like Centipede, Punch-Out, Simpsons and Space Invaders. This is not your typical arcade because at Ground Kontrol there is a fully functional bar. Awesome.
I’m a huge fan of Punch-Out so I was stoked to find this classic arcade game at Ground Kontrol!
After Ground Kontrol my buddies decided to grab a box of VooDoo doughnuts for the drive back home. While they stood in line (in the hot sun no less and yet another reason to go during the night time) I ventured down the street and stumbled across a neat little coffee/art shop called Stumptown Coffee Roasters. It had a a nice open space as opposed to the typical cramped coffee shop. I had the Queens Iced Tea and it was the cool refreshment that I needed! While the guys stood in that line for VooDoo doughnuts I sipped on my iced tea in air conditioning!
Good bye Portland, I knew you for just a day but I had a great time! Now en route to Tacoma (to return the car), we decided to stop by the Outlet Mall near Chehalis and in Centralia, Washington. The outlet stores of importance included Quicksilver, Billabong, and Nike. We hit those three shops up pretty hard.
From there we caught a shuttle to the 4th and final hotel of our stay – the Marriott Seattle Waterfront, which is just a few steps from Pike’s Place. We didn’t stay in the hotel for long as we decided grab some Clam Chowder from the original Ivar’s Seafood, right on the Seattle Waterfront. When you go to Ivar’s there just one thing you need to get – The Clam Chowder! We ordered one of each of the three different varieties: white, red and salmon. I urge you to do the same.
They encourage you to feed the Seagulls.
Small cup of Salmon Clam Chowder from Iver’s before heading to Del Rays for even more food and drinks!
Next we hit up Del-Rey’s for appetizers and drinks (or should I say beers and margaritas) and then finished the night off by closing down the bar at, appropriately, Ohana’s in Belltown, a Hawaiian themed bar. This was the third night that we stayed at a bar till closing (2am in Seattle).
But the night did not end there. We ventured off into the alley ways of the Seattle Waterfront and eventually ending up at Pier 67. The streets were empty and all that was left were four guys from Hawaii, laughing, talking and enjoying the camaraderie that you get from being with your closest friends.
Strangely enough, we ended our last together at Ohana’s in Belltown.
We had a late start on Day 3 mainly due to the amount of alcohol consumption the day before. That’s okay because we kicked the day off by eating a late breakfast/early lunch at Schultzy’s Sausage on “The Ave” near the University of Washington. When I visited Seattle 5 years ago this place was a small hole in the wall and I loved eating there. They’ve renovated since then but the sausage burgers are still amazing! The original Shultzy is my weapon of choice.
We then headed back to the Seattle Waterfront to checkout the Seattle Aquarium, which I thought I had visited before but it turned out that I had mistaken it for the New England Aquarium. The New England Aquarium was awesome. The Seattle Aquarium, not so much. A harbor boat cruise tour Â followed (via Argosy Cruises) and we got to see the different Seattle landmarks from a different perspective.
After the cruise we walked through Downtown/Pioneer Square and towards Safeco Field to watch the Mariners play the Yankees. I love going to pro sporting events whenever I’m on the mainland since we have zilch pro sports in Hawaii. I found it interesting that they allowed vendors to sell food right next to the stadium. You could even bring goods inside the stadium except for liquids. Awesome!
We had time to kill before the game so we hopped on over to the Pyramid Brewing Company. Pyramid makes my favorite beer, the Pyramid Hefeweizen (renamed the Pyramid Haywire Hefeweizen). It was a 40 minute wait to get into the restaurant but we hung out in the Beer Garaden and drank a few while we waited to get in- how convenient! Once inside we ordered up some garlic fries (which were amazing) and had, you guessed it, more beer!
After the impromptu beer session we headed to the ball park, just a couple of feet away. We had pretty good seats overlooking left field. The Mariners got off to a good start and then the Yankees kicked it up a notch around the 6th inning. Needless to say, the Mariners lost and the Yankee fans were heckling away like mad men.
After the game we decided to checkout the late night vew from atop the Space Needle. I’ve never been up there Â in the evening and have to say:
1. Much less people around. During the day it’s super crowded. If you hate crowds then go at night.
2. The view at night is stunning! It gets chilly up there so bring a jacket.
We chose to eat at the top of the Needle before heading back to our hotel. Another incredible day in the books.
Baseball + Beer = Waking up late the following day. That’s exactly what happened. We ended up eating a late breakfast in the hotel. Not ideal but it did the trick.
So the whole reason why we made Seattle our destination for the now 4th Annual Guys Trip was because the good friend of one of my buddies was getting married. Today was the wedding ceremony and reception! The ceremony was held at the Sylvan Grove on the grounds of the University of Washington. It was a rather beautiful ceremony that incorporated both American and Cambodian customs.
This is the first of a couple day-by-day updates that Iâ€™ll be doing during my trip to Seattle/Portland. I thought it would be cool to keep you guys up to date as to what Iâ€™m up to and what tee I am wearing! If you want to checkout the tee that I wore just click on the orange links.
Things got off to interesting start with one of my friends missing their flight from Honolulu to Washington but that’s okay because he arrived earlier than I did! This was because he was able to get a direct flight when his original flight was delayed. Our third friend, who was coming from Boston and flying Delta Airlines found out that his luggage never made it to Seattle. Poor guy, he would not receive until two days later.
Our first full day in Seattle was spent driving up to Mount St. Helens, a good 3 hour drive from Tacoma, Washington. But it turned out to be a let down since it was very, very cloudy and rainy up at the top Johnston Ridge Observatory. We got to learn a ton about the history of the 1980 eruption but unfortunately we weren’t able to see the crater. Lame!
Later that night we met up with our friends from Seattle, whom were getting married that weekend. We checked out The Parlor Billiards & Spirits at the Bellevue Entertainment Center, an upscale billiards parlor frequented by many Microsoft employees (booo!). And in case you were wondering, Microsoft owns a ton of buildings in the Seattle area – I saw Microsoft plastered everywhere. My worst nightmare.
Day 2 we planned to hit up the typical Seattle tourist spots. This meant visits to the Seattle Space Needle and Pike Place Public Market. I’ve been to both before so I knew what to expect. What I really looked forward to was eating at The Crab Pot located at the Seattle Waterfront. If you plan to be in the Seattle area then The Crab Pot is a must visit destination. They serve up amazing seafood that’s dumped directly on to your table, including, Alaskan King Crab, Dungeness Crab, Snow Crab, Shrimp, Steamed Clams, Pacific Mussels, Ouille Sausage, Corn on the Cob and Red Potatoes. We ordered four buckets full of seafood goodness!
This is The Seattle Gum Wall! I love this alley way in the back of Pike’s in Downtown Seattle. A wall filled with chewed gum – so ewww but so cool!
Later that evening we decided to do the Seattle Underworld Tour, which is a variation of the family friendly Seattle Underground Tour. Seattle is a city built on top of the original city. The great fire of 1889 burnt the original city of Seattle down and a new city was erected on top of the original. Because of this, the original city still exists one story below ground level. This certianly made for an interested tour that consisted of tales of sex, whores, opium and debauchery. Great stuff! Oh, and did I mention that you get to drink during this tour, well, at the end of it anyway, a free cocktail on the house!
We wrapped up the evening by consuming even more beer, but at a different location, The Ram, which is located in the University district. We had good beers and talked up a storm. Basically caught with what had been going on in each others lives for the past year. Good times.
I’m just about ready to leave my house to catch my flight to Seattle! I couldn’t resist doing a quick video of the flyaway shirt I chose to wear. It’s from the guys over at the Plaid Design Agency. They sent me over this tee after I blogged about their Plaid Nation 2009 cross country tour. I love it!
So, as a fair warning, I’ll be gone till next Wednesday but don’t worry I will still be doing posts on the blog. I have some already prepared but I will most likely be doing video blogs of my travels. Hopefully I’ll also be able to meet up with the guys behind Tilteed and Found Item Clothing while I am in Portland! So keep an eye out for those!